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    Palaeolakes on Mars: geomorphology and hydrology at the planetary dichotomy

    Dickeson, Zachary Ian (2022) Palaeolakes on Mars: geomorphology and hydrology at the planetary dichotomy. PhD thesis, Birkbeck, University of London.

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    Hundreds of ancient palaeolakes have been identified on Mars, indicating widespread aqueous processes and potentially habitable conditions, with global catalogues constraining past climatic conditions and hydrological processes, and local studies characterising lacustrine processes and shifting conditions over time. The goal of this thesis is to characterise the hydrological setting of the planetary dichotomy during the Noachian and Hesperian, and link high-resolution local studies into regional and global trends in an effort to bridge the gaps between disparate scales. Arabia Terra has few documented palaeolakes, and is bounded to the north east by the planetary dichotomy, presenting the dual opportunity to investigate: palaeolakes in an underrepresented area of the planet; and the nature of a globally significant hydrological and morphological boundary. The initial research of this thesis is centred on two fluvio-lacustrine systems which terminate at the dichotomy: the first representing a previously unknown chain of palaeolakes, allowing a wide scope for novel observations; and the second, in the area of Oxia Planum, the landing site of the upcoming ExoMars rover mission, allowing a comparison and integration of findings with existing studies. Building on the results and methods of these detailed studies, the final research expands the study area to encompass the wider region, to compile a comprehensive catalogue of fluvial and lacustrine features. Analysis and correlation of multiple, temporally distinct palaeolake fill levels within individual palaeolake basins indicates a complex and prolonged hydrological history in the area, and catalogued palaeolakes allowed the delineation of drainage catchments representative of ancient Arabia Terra, revealing regional drainage patterns strongly controlled by impact crater basins, and semi-arid climatic conditions. Due to these constraints, only a limited number of highland drainage catchments are sources for closed-basin palaeolakes in the lowlands, with the majority of palaeolake systems terminating within deep sinks in the highlands.


    Item Type: Thesis
    Copyright Holders: The copyright of this thesis rests with the author, who asserts his/her right to be known as such according to the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988. No dealing with the thesis contrary to the copyright or moral rights of the author is permitted.
    Depositing User: Acquisitions And Metadata
    Date Deposited: 14 Nov 2022 14:18
    Last Modified: 01 Nov 2023 15:50


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